By Jim Bastian
Journal Sports Writer
NEW ULM - They won it with a walkoff walk.
Staff photo by Steve Muscatello
New Ulm Brewers shortstop Zach More (16) waits for the ball as Essig’s Eric Hauser slides safely into second during Tomahawk East playoff action Saturday at Johnson Park in New Ulm.
For more photos of this event go to cu.nujournal.com
A Judd Davis four-pitch bases-loaded walk from Essig's Jory Dove in the bottom of the 10th inning scored pinch runner Taylor Rolloff from third and lifted the New Ulm Brewers to a 3-2 win against the Bluejays on Saturday night at Johnson Park in the start of the Region 2C tournament.
Zach More got the win in relief for New Ulm. More went three innings and and allowed one hit. More also worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the top of the eighth inning.
Mitch Kelly started for New Ulm and went seven innings, allowing both Bluejays' runs and five hits. Kelly fanned three.
Dove went three innings in absorbing the loss. He permitted three hits in relief of starter Eric Schiebel, who allowed two runs on five hits.
Eric Hauser had two hits for Essig, while Matt Suess and Drew Pfaff each had two hits for the Brewers.
Essig will host Hanska at 2 p.m. on Sunday while New Ulm plays at Searles with a 2 p.m. first pitch.
"I do not remembers winning with a walkoff walk," said Brewers manager Al Flor. "But a win is a win and we got better plate approaches as the game went on. We got clutch hitting out of players that we did not expect to get that out of and they did a great job tonight."
New Ulm mounted its winning rally in the bottom of the 10th when Dove hit Zach Hoffmann. Rolloff, running for Hoffmann, raced to third on a Brady Ranweiler single to right field. Essig then intentionally walked Jason Shaul to load the bases before unintentionally walking Davis on four pitches.
Essig, the sixth seed in the Region 2C tournament, took a 2-0 lead in the top of the fourth off Kelly.
Erich Prokosch led off with a double before Terry Helget walked. A passed ball moved both runners up. A Kyle Krzmarzick sacrifice fly scored Prokosch before Helget came home on a suicide squeeze bunt from E.J. Berdan.
And it looked like that lead might have held up for Essig and Scheibel.
The Brewers left runners in scoring position in the third, fourth, fifth and sixth innings.
But in the sixth, the Brewers got some needed clutch hitting.
Shaul led off with a walk and Suess reached on an infield single.
Both runners moved up a base on a More groundout before Drew Pfaff came up with the biggest hit of the game with a two-run single to right field.
"We do not win this game tonight if not for Drew's hit," Flor said. "We needed a young kid to do that for the team."
The Brewers almost won the game in the bottom of the ninth when Pfaff laced a one-out single and stole second. But he was thrown out at home on by left fielder Eric Hauser on a Cory Ranweiler base hit.
"Essig always plays us tough," said Flor. "They always play good against us. This is a huge win for us because with five games in seven days you need to get up on everybody."
Flor said he will start Chris Cariveau at Searles.